So What?

Have you ever noticed how quick some people get upset, and at times over the littlest things?  It can seem silly at times, but don’t tell them that.  It could only build more frustration.

The funny thing about these individuals is this; they “choose” to get upset.  I learned that truth many years ago while attending marriage counseling with my first wife.  The counselor pointed out my wife can’t “make me mad” just like she can’t “make me hungry”.  That made sense.

Ignoring things in life that bother you can be a challenge, but not impossible.  One technique is to look at the overall situation and to ask yourself, “Does it really matter?”  Finding a way to say. “So what?” is important.

The alternative is flying off the handle.  Spouting words that can hurt, cut and potentially do permanent damage to the receiver of those “acts of rage” that could take years to overcome.

You can definitely pray and ask God to help you, and partner that with help from key identifiers.  Signals inside you that may indicate your tolerance level is rising to a boiling over point.  That can be the time to walk away quietly, or simply correct the frustration issue without commenting on it.

It is easier to change yourself, than to try to change another person.

The Bible says this about the importance of responding correctly:

Respond gently when you are confronted
    and you’ll defuse the rage of another.
    Responding with sharp, cutting words[a] will only make it worse.
    Don’t you know that being angry
    can ruin the testimony of even the wisest of men?
When wisdom speaks, understanding becomes attractive.
    But the words of the fool make their ignorance look laughable.
The eyes of the Lord are everywhere
    and he takes note of everything that happens.
    He watches over his lovers,
    and he also sees the wickedness of the wicked.
When you speak healing words,
    you offer others fruit from the tree of life.
    But unhealthy, negative words do nothing but crush their hopes.  Prov. 15:1-4

One thing to remember is; your outburst can ruin your witness of the love of God before others.  That’s a sobering thought.  People tend to remember a single outburst instead of the countless acts of love that came in the days before.  It’s not fair, but unfortunately true.  Choose to react with one of the fruits of the Spirit of God.  “Love, joy, peace, self-control, kindness, goodness, forbearance, and gentleness.  It’s a better way to go. Oh! And in the spirit of transparency, I needed this post probably more than anyone else!

Copyright © 2021 Mark Brady.  All rights reserved.

I Need the Rainbow

080212TB 228This year, 2020, has proven to be one big storm that won’t stop.  It has harmed so many people, in so many ways.  Interview them, and you would hear different versions of the same story, “Hurt”.  Whether it’s a lost job, drowning in debt, the death of a loved one due to Covid, keeping family and friends from gathering as they once did, or new challenges no one saw coming.  When will it end?

Isaiah 61:3  The Passion Translation

to strengthen those crushed by despair who mourn in Zion—
    to give them a beautiful bouquet in the place of ashes,
    the oil of bliss instead of tears,
    and the mantle of joyous praise
    instead of the spirit of heaviness.
    Because of this, they will be known as
    Mighty Oaks of Righteousness,
    planted by Yahweh as a living display of his glory.

You see, the only way to get through the storm, to silence the thunder, to calm fear when lightning flashes, is to look up, see God, and put on the mantle of joyous praise.  Praise him with full throat.  A friend, who lives in Taiwan, said he was singing praises to God while riding his scooter the other day.  Not caring who heard him, but unless they knew English, they probably didn’t even know what he was saying anyway.

The last few blogs have had this theme, of looking only at God, so I know this is the message of heaven to all for this time, but especially to those who love God.  The storm will end and when it does people will come out to survey the damage, and even if they see what harm has come upon you, but then look at your face they will see peace, love, God.  They may ask, “How can you still love God?  How is it you can still smile?”  Your answer will be, “I’m a tree planted by Yahweh as a living display of His glory!”

The storm will end, and when it does, I hope you are still standing, and still looking up, because only then will you see the rainbow.  The symbol from God, signaling, the storm is over.

Copyright © 2020 Mark Brady.  All rights reserved.

The Business of Restoration

041020“It’s a 3 alarm fire!” I woke up yelling a week ago, Tuesday morning, at 3:33 AM.  It freaked me out.  I sensed no present danger, so I proceeded to do what one does when they wake up in the middle of the night, while I asked God, “Why did I yell that?”  I got no impressions as to why, and thought perhaps it meant things were really bad with the Corona Virus and I should be praying more.  I did, and then went back to bed.

I was woken up at 9:00 AM to the deep rumble of engines, and to loud voices of men.  It scared me.  It took me a moment, or two, to realize my neighbor’s house was on fire and there were at least 6 fire trucks out front.  Only the man of the house was home at the time, and he had just fallen to sleep when the smoke detector saved his life.  He works the evening shift and gets home late.

When I went outside I learned my neighbors were okay, but the inside of the house had become disguised by blackness, and there was extensive damage to things that make up life, like family photos that once hung on the wall.

This morning it hit me that our lives can be disguised by blackness, evil, as well, but it seems to be subtle, over time, and not in a flash of flames.  In other words, you change from who you used to be, but you don’t see it happening.  I know it has happened to me.

Satan loves being deceitful!

My neighbours have taken a tighter hold of God’s hand today, as He walks with them through this time of restoration.  I have a feeling God will use this opportunity to do some restoration work on their souls as well.  When I was next door examining the damage up close, I saw a bright yellow, butterfly rise up out of the smoldering debris that was once bedroom furniture.  It got my attention, beautiful life rising up out of what looks to be ruin.

Psalms 23:2-3 (The Passion Translation)
He offers a resting place for me in his luxurious love.
His tracks take me to an oasis of peace, the quiet brook of bliss.
That’s where he restores and revives my life.
He opens before me pathways to God’s pleasure
and leads me along in his footsteps of righteousness
so that I can bring honor to his name.

God has had to restore life, real life, to me as well.  Looking back, there have been times when I have drifted from God’s plans, and purposes for me, but God has, in a tender way, restored me, brought life back.  He can, and wants to do this for you as well.  It doesn’t matter what you have done, said, or how far you have gone off track.  God loves you, and if you will ask for it, forgive you as well.  If you took a good, long, honest look in the mirror you might see the years of blackness on you.  God says, “come here, I can wipe that off, and restore you my child to be who I destined you to be.  It’s my business, and I’m good at it.”

Copyright © 2020 Mark Brady.  All rights reserved.